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A League of his own

Published: Thur, 19 Jul 2018
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Paul will be travelling to Holland for the CP Football European Champs
Staff member, Paul Cassidy, will be representing NI at the CP Football European Championship
Paul Cassidy will be swapping his Housing Executive name badge for his passport when he heads off to compete in the Cerebral Palsy Football European Championship.
Paul, who works in our Lisburn Dairyfarm office as a Graduate Trainee, is delighted to be representing Northern Ireland in Holland at the end of the month.
This is a momentous achievement for Paul, whose road to recovery from a serious accident began 8 years ago:
“In 2010 I was knocked unconscious when I fell from a garage roof while cleaning the windows of a neighbour’s home. I had to be rushed to hospital and my injuries were so severe the doctors initially gave me 8 hours to live.
“When I finally awoke my whole world had been turned upside down. I could barely move but after 2 years of rehabilitation I was able to walk again.
“Although I have been left with a permanent brain injury I’ve never let it hold me back and I can’t wait to experience playing in Holland. Everyone in the team really pushes each other so being selected to compete at this high level is a reflection of the dedication of every single member of the Irish Football Association team.”
Ten countries will be competing for the European trophy and the NI team have been drawn in a tough qualifying group featuring Holland, Germany, Republic of Ireland and Denmark.
In the lead up to the games, Paul has been training 6 days a week on top of working full time for the Housing Executive:
“I genuinely can’t thank the Housing Executive enough for giving me the support I need not only at work but to allow me to pursue my passion for football as well.
“They recognise how important it is to remove any barriers that prevent someone with a disability taking part in sport.”
Paul’s colleagues are delighted that the world is getting to see how talented he is and wish the team great success at the Championship.